Introduction and Overview
The Museum Loan Network (MLN), an organization devoted to making museums' collections more accessible and understandable to the public, has expanded its MLN Directory online by increasing and strengthening its presentation of early American painting and sculpture through 1840. Guided by project advisors and through generous support from
The Henry Luce Foundation,
Energizing the Study of Early American Art ("EEAA") will present online information and images of a core group of loanable objects, as well as, a selection of comparative early American works not necessarily available for long-term loan in order to increase accessbility to works from the period. The expanded Directory, designed for use by academics, researchers, independent scholars, curators, students and educators, will facilitate study of early American art, promote collections sharing, strengthen existing museum networks and foster new long-term relationships between colleagues in the field.
Funding for EEAA also made 13 internships possible at participating institutions thereby increasing opportunities for emerging scholars and professionals to focus early American art. This unique opportunity will allow Americanists and others interested in exploring work from the period to study hundreds of examples made acccessible on the
MLN Directory. Plans are also underway to launch a blog in 2006 devoted to topics in early American art. To date, the EEAA initiative has enabled 21 institutions to identify 458 early American portraits now accessbile on the MLN Directory.
MLN Directory users searching for early American portraits on the the MLN website will find EEAA records presented for comparative purposes noted in the object image as "Not Available for Long Term Loan" (see illustration below).
Two sample portraits identified through the EEAA initiative: